DTapas Diner
The other night my fellow bar manager young Carl introduced me to a fellow Englishman whom he said owned and ran a new restaurant named the Number 1 Diner. There was several guys present and each one of them said they had eaten there and the food was pretty bloody good and decently priced.

I thought to myself this restaurant is only new but it seems familiar to me so I asked them where is it situated and they told me it's right next to Candy Bar and Det5 bar, it's where the old Zappatas used to be and then Thai Baht. As it turns out this restaurant is still owned by the same guy who owned Thai Baht and I have to say the boys
 
   

   
 

Location:

Address: 480 Don Juico Ave., Cor. Mayon Street, Angeles City

Web site: www.spanishrestoangeles.com

Phone #: (045) 624-0105

Opening Hours and Home Delivery: 11am till 11pm


Menu
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   

right, the food is excellent and competitively priced. What impressed me was that this restaurant although only new was meticuously organized, spotlessly clean, the servings were large, the ingredients fresh and mouthwatering, the food was perfectly cooked and delightfully tasty and best of all it was competitively priced.

The story behind the name is quite interesting. Apparently the owner an Englishman established Thai Baht with his Thai wife but they separated and he then shaked up with his head waitress from Thai Baht, a Filipina whose nick name was number one. A number of people swear by this girl and say she runs a
 
   
Paul and No 1

   
Dinning Area

   
Baby Back Ribs

   
Fish and Chips
 

tight ship and is a real professional. I have to also admit that she ain't exactly an eye sore either.

I am a firm believer that it is nearly impossible to run a business effectively in the Philippines without being there to supervise the Filipino staff especially if your main market is that of foreigners and you are involved in the service industry such as that of a restaurant. I was glad to note that the owner was present the entire time we were eating there and was watching the staff carefully. He was also quite friendly but not pushy, just making sure we had a good meal.

To be honest I was quite surprised at how good the food was here and was indeed pleasantly surprised by the price. The average meal would probably work out to be about 350 piso and considering how well cooked and how big the servings are, this is real value for money. Of course there are some dishes which far exceed the 350 but there are also good dishes that are less so the average would probably work out somewhere around this mark.

The main theme of this restaurant as the name would suggest is Italian American food and as you can see from the menu this is exactly what they have managed to achieve. The Italian side is represented by your classic pasta dishes such as Spaghetti with various different toppings bolognaise and carbonara spring to mind, penne, lasagna and ravioli. They also have a range of Pizza which I am yet to try but I hear they are impressive.

When it comes to the main courses the menu is impressively diverse all of which it could be argued are American classics. They have a number of chicken dishes including chicken barbeque, chicken Parmigianino, pan roasted chicken with garlic and chicken fingers. This is complimented by different dishes such as Italian bangers and mash and pork malanese through to sea food dishes such as Shrimp Scampi, Dory Calebrese and even Fish Fingers and chips.

The chicken dishes are complimented by the beef dishes of which they have an impressive range. From beef Osso Bucco and simple burger steak through to the expensive US Angus Rib Eye, T-Bone steaks and of course the delicious surf and turf.

The restaurant could hardly claim to represent American dishes without burgers and the burgers here are pretty impressive both in size and taste. The burgers include your basic hamburger, cheese burger cheese and bacon burger and a lamb burger. There is also a chicken Caesar sandwich and fish sandwich. When there we deliberately ordered a diverse range of dishes and the restaurant handled it easily.


My partner ordered the baby back ribs which were pretty good and came smothered with a tangy sauce. My eldest daughter ordered the burger steak which came topped with a rich mushroom based gravy while I ordered spinach filled ravioli and my youngest tucked into fish fingers and chips. I have to say the fish fingers and chips was brilliantly fresh and literally melted in my mouth as I devoured it. The spinach ravioli was also pretty good and came with a light cream sauce. This was all washed down with a shake that was in my opinion probably the best shake in Angeles if not the best then certainly right up there with the best.

The restaurant is pretty much the same design as Thai Baht used to be with wooden bench seating each table being capable of seating 4 adults comfortably. This is complimented by the large table at the front of the restaurant which seats up to 8 people comfortably. I would estimate that the restaurant can accommodate up to 40 patrons and there are overhead fans and efficient air-cons keeping the place nice and cool.

There is a nicely done wet bar area which seems to double up as a meeting place for a select crowd of diners and drinkers. From what I have seen the guys who congregate around here are mainly expats and there is ofetn a friendly discussion taking place all over drinks and excellent food.

The Number 1 Diner in my opinion is certainly worth a visit. It has a comprehensive range of food realistically priced and from what I have experienced very well prepared and cooked. Currently they do not offer the AE discount but negotiations are underway and I expect it will be instituted soon.

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